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Honduras Mission Initiative
Global Ministries’ Honduras Mission Initiative began as missionaries from the Caribbean traveled to Honduras in the late 1990s. Indigenous mission pastors and missionaries from different countries joined in the work, much of which centered on recovery efforts following Hurricane Mitch. Most of the faith communities are in rural areas and involve large numbers of women and children. While local churches are able to fund local work, the majority is unable to provide salaries for pastors or afford facilities.
Challenges: Mission programs are in the process of development in collaboration with ministries United Methodist Volunteers in Mission’s work in construction, education, environmental ministries, healthcare, and economic development.
Because most existing congregations are in rural areas, there is a need for work in urban areas. All local churches need to become more self-sufficient. Help is needed to support small groups as they evolve into house churches.
There is also a need to train leaders and pastors, particularly among the native Hondurans. Theology, spiritual formation, and pastoral and Methodist studies have been identified as critical needs. Only one indigenous mission pastor has a university degree.
Assets: The Mission Initiative benefits from UMVIM’s work, which indirectly relates to church development and generally strengthens the mission. Men’s, women’s, and youth groups have been organized and Christian education resources are being published. A Committee of the Ordained and Licensed Ministry is strengthening the credentialing process. The mission superintendent and bishop hold regular meetings and two annual retreats with pastors. In the last year, three church facilities were constructed or remodeled using local resources, three congregations were formed in the Northern urban area, and two avanzadas (missions) became congregations.
There are four Global Ministries missionaries serving the Initiative.
Goals: At the recent annual gathering, the approved priorities include: 1) promoting house churches, 2) offering workshops on the relationship between Works of Piety and Works of Mercy, 3) forming local church choirs, 4) crafting liturgical vestments, 5) increasing Wesleyan Studies, and 6) constructing a national center. The Honduras Mission Initiative’s long-term goal is to become a Mission or Provisional Annual Conference.
Statistics: There are 18 congregations and 52 small groups.
In Mission Together Coordinator:
Bishop Elias G. Galvan
Learn more about Mission Initiatives and how local churches in the US are partnering with these congregations through the In Mission Together program. Share your prayers and get real time updates by joining the Facebook group page for this Mission Initiative. Visit the page and click on “Join Group” to become a part of the conversation.